Chanoyu practice (keiko) or 'ocha no keiko', begins with learning how to receive a bowl of thin tea, as we saw on the previous page.
Finally we practice how to prepare a bowl of tea as a host. First we learn thin tea procedure, and finally we come to practising charcoal procedure in the ro (hearth) and the furo (brazier), then we learn how to receive koicha (thick powdered green tea), then how to prepare this tea. This takes rather a long time, but tea practice quickly moves on to new and higher levels.
There are many kinds of diplomas (menjo) and licenses (kyojo) or certificates (menkyojo) for every level of chanoyu practice, as well as soden menjo ('transmitted teachings' diploma), but each one is proof that a certain course has been mastered. These are given by the Iemoto of each school of chanoyu according to the course of training received. The content of practice differs somewhat depending on the school of tea, but they are important courses of study that have been built up over hundreds of years. It would be difficult to master them in a short period of time.
But, in order that the desire to practice should not be lost, courses are put together so that after a certain period of practice one can receive a diploma and move up to the next level.
Chanoyu practice does not stop at a mastery of temae (tea procedure), in other words it does not stop at the correct way of learning how to prepare tea and how to drink it according to the proper etiquette, but comes at last to kaiseki (chanoyu cuisine), and to learning how to give an entertainment which is a combination of tea and food, called a chaji, and to a knowledge of all the utensils and how to use them. These are all areas in which one must become skilled.